Liverpool vs. Manchester City - England Premier League, Anfield Liverpool England 1 PM EST Sunday August 26, 2012
by Jason, Soccer Handicapper, Predictem.com
Match Odds: Liverpool 3.10 / Manchester City 2.30 / Draw 3.40
Moneyline: Liverpool +200 / Manchester City +130 / Draw +240
Over/Under: 2.5 goals
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Before the season there was a lot of hype for Liverpool heading into the England Premier League season with Brendan Rodgers being brought in as a new manager and he promised to bring glory back to the Reds. However, things have not started off well for the Reds, to say the least, as they were crushed in their first match losing to West Bromwich 3-0.
Manchester City won the EPL title last season and their squad had not changed much. They beat Chelsea in the FA Community Shield and looked good in off-season friendlies. While they did win their first EPL match of the season they looked a little lethargic in beating Southampton, who were promoted to the EPL this season, 3-2.
White the City defense has given up 4 goals in their last 2 matches they have made up for that by scoring 6 goals.
The transfer window does not close until August 31st and Rodgers has been in talks with Chelsea to bring over FW Daniel Sturridge. Considering how the Reds looked on offense in their opening loss they could use some kind of offensive spark.
In their loss to West Brom the Reds really looked lost on defense and this was especially the case when defender Daniel Agger was given a red card and was sent off the pitch. Liverpool will need to shore up their defense in this match facing a Man City offense that is playing well and scored the most goals in the EPL last season.
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Anfield is not an easy place for visitors to play and count on the Reds to play better in front of their home faithful. Last season when these 2 clubs played at Anfield they played to a 1-1 draw.
Carlos Tvez, Edin Dzeko, and Samir Nasri each scored 1 goal in the win over Southampton and they are the guys that the Reds’ defense has to key on. Tvez was out of favor with City last season, but he is back in the fold and a dangerous striker that I think will score in this match.
Luis Surez, who led Liverpool in goals last season, and the newly brought in Fabio Borini must press the issue on offense and they will need support from MF Steven Gerrard.
Liverpool struggled last season on offense and they obviously did against West Brom. They have to use good ball movement and they really have to play well in the midfield where Gerrard will have to shine. He will be fired up for this match and will play well setting up the Reds on a few scoring chances.
City had a whopping 23 shots in the win over Southampton and since they will be attacking the whole match the Reds need to pounce on counter attack chances.
Liverpool G Pepe Reina allowed 3 goals in the loss to West Brom and he is key in this match. Along with the Reds’ defense he will play better in this match, but there is no way he will keep a clean sheet.
Liverpool Recent Form
7/28/2012 Tottenham 0 Liverpool 0 (Friendly)
8/2/2012 Gomel 0 Liverpool 1 (Europa League)
8/9/2012 Liverpool 3 Gomel 0 (Europa League)
8/12/2012 Liverpool 3 Leverkusen 1 (Friendly)
8/19/2012 West Bromwich 3 Liverpool 0 (Premier League)
Manchester City Last 5 Matches
7/29/2012 Man City 2 Arsenal 0 (Friendly)
8/4/2012 Wolfsburg 0 Man City 2 (Friendly)
8/5/2012 Limerick 0 Man City 4 (Friendly)
8/12/2012 Chelsea 2 Manchester City 3 (FA Community Shield)
8/19/2012 Manchester City 3 Southampton 2 (Premier League)
Jason’s Prediction: Manchester City looked lethargic in their win over Southampton, but that will not happen in this match facing a Liverpool squad at Anfield since they are part of the Big 4. The Reds will play a better match than they did in their opening one, but it will take time for the squad to get on the same page as Rodgers. Look for a close match in the first half, but City’s offense will come though in the 2nd half and win this match.